Beware the cemetery on Halloween night. For at that time the veil between the supernatural is thin, and creatures of all sorts have a habit of slipping through. Yet, the worst of them all are not the ghosts and ghouls who haunt abandoned rooms and misty forests, nor the Witches cackling in the air above. The werewolves howling to the moon and the vampires lurking in the shadows have nothing on the real monsters.
On this night, the worst are the twins dressed in black, hiding their true nature beneath pale pretty faces. Whose eyes flash in the dark with wide pearly grins. Beware the twins who spend the night singing and dancing amongst the graves, whose voices cast siren spells. Who lure in the young and steal them away into the dark, never to be seen again.
So beware, beware the cemetery at night. Beware the cheerful singing of the Black Cat Sisters. For I have seen them, I have played their game, and lost.
“Thomas slow down!” I call, racing after my younger brother. He laughs, voice ringing over the calls and screams of other children and their families, but slows at my call. He bounces, his pumpkin candy bucket swinging and bumping against the plastic armor covering his chest. This year he decided to dress as a knight, complete with cape and plastic sword.
“Okay, it’s time to go home now.” I say. He groans, which looks hilarious as his helmet slips forward for the sixteenth time tonight. I snicker, bending down and fixing the too big helmet again.
“Not yet sis. ” He begs, slipping back into his bright grin and resuming his earlier bouncing as he takes my offered hand. “Just a few more houses, please.” I smile, shaking my head as I take out my phone to check the time, his raw joy and enthusiasm washing over me. Ah, to be so young again. (Says the fifteen year old.)
“It’s getting late though…” I say, making the mistake of looking down at his big eyes and wobbling lip. I bite my lip, we really should be heading home soon, it’s nearly his bedtime and the streets are thinning out. After a minute I sigh, look down at him and smile. “Okay buddy, one more house, but then we go straight home, got it?” He cheers and jumps, nodding his head vigorously as he begins dragging me to the next house.
After, he retakes my hand without complaint and we begin our trek home. Along the way, we approach the town cemetery, and Thomas presses closer against my leg, little fingers tightening around mine. We shiver but press on, to get to our street we always have to pass the cemetery, but tonight, it seems a bit more frightening than usual.
“Come on.” I urge, squeezing Thomas’ little hand, tugging him behind me, trying to get past as quick as possible. The tall iron gate looms above, and though Thomas is too short, I’m the perfect height to see over the stone fence. The headstones seem to glow under the moon, the earth hidden in shadow and mist.
Thomas stops, jerking me to a halt just as we pass the gate. I glance down to find him staring past the iron bars. Unmoving as he clutches his candy bucket, his fingers stiff against mine.
“What’s wrong?” I ask, dropping to a crouch and placing my hands on his shoulders. He still doesn’t look at me, his dark eyes wide as he stares deep into the cemetery. “Thomas.” I say, shaking his shoulders. “Thomas, talk to me. What’s wro–”
“Can you hear that?” He whispers. I frown, turning my gaze past the gate, but all I see are grave markers and shadows, and the mist rolling towards us. I shake my head, turning back to my frozen little brother. My eyes burn as I shake him again.
“No. No I can’t hear anything Thomas. Come on, you’re scaring me. Let’s just go–”
I stop. I can hear something. Someone, singing? I stand, stepping forward and squinting my eyes, trying to see the owner of the voice.
“Hello?” I call, wrapping a hand around one of the bars, only to nearly fall on my face as the gate swings open. Clinging to the bar, I straighten and immediately the hairs on my neck stand up, the temperature seems to drop. I shiver, a shaky sigh passes my lips as I turn back to Thomas, ready to tell him we should go, only to watch him rush past me.
“Thomas!” I call lurching forward, only to pause, the metal freezing under my fingers, breath stolen by the sudden memory of a story my Great Aunt once told me.
“On Hallows night, stay clear of the cemetery, for there are monsters about this time of year. Creatures worse than mere ghost and ghouls child. Beware the singing in the cemetery at night, beware the monsters in black that will lure you away with their pretty faces and siren voices. Beware the Twin Black Cat Sisters.”
I am afraid, every instinct tells me to turn and run straight home, but Thomas isn’t with me, he’s barely in sight. I shake my head and race after him, calling his name as I run. The deeper we go, the louder the voice, now voices, get, and the more my fear grows. My Great Aunts words sounding much more terrifying and real as time goes on. Yet still, I can’t leave my brother, so deeper and deeper I go, until suddenly, I can understand the words.
“Oh, it’s Hallows Night once more,
A time to play and settle our score.
So come, all who hear our song,
Come little children, come sing along.
We’ll laugh til our lungs burst,
We’ll run and jump and dance,
And see who comes out first,
So follow along under our trance.
We don’t like cheaters so don’t try to run,
Tonight, no one can ruin our fun.
Oh, it’s Hallows Night, hurray.
So come along children, it’s time to play.”
Upon the songs end, I burst through the hedges marking the beginning of the old cemetery; where the stones are cracked and the mausoleums lie. There, there is where I find Thomas, and the twos singers. I gasp for breath, bangs plastered to my skin, and take in the two teenagers standing a few feet away holding each others hands.
Both look exactly the same in face and height, with golden eyes that seem to glow and lips painted crimson, with cat ears atop their heads. The one on the right has long black hair, and wears a knee-length black dress and shiny dress shoes with a silver bell choker around her neck. The one on the left has short hair, the black locks hovering just above her shoulders, she wears a black hoodie and black shorts with black boots and a golden bell choker.
“Well, hello there!” The long-haired girl cheers, releasing her sisters(?) hands and skipping over to where Thomas is. My instincts scream at me to move, to scoop Thomas into my arms and run home, but I can’t seem to move. Can’t let out the scream in my throat, my lips seemingly frozen together. All I can do is watch as the teen stalks around my brother.
“What’s your name, little one?” She asks, sickening sweet as she smiles.
“Thomas.” He slurs, grinning back as he spins, following her movements.
“Thomas.“ She says, slowly, savoring the word before grinning unnaturally wide, flashing pearly fangs and clapping her hands. “What a wonderful name.” Before I can ponder the implications of this stranger touching my little brother, my attention is stolen by the other teen, who has come to me. Her grin is equally unnatural and terrifying as she walks around me, taking me in before reaching forward and pressing cold sharp-nailed fingers against my cheek.
“And what’s your na–“ Her hand brushes my necklace and she immediately flinches back, violently. Leaving behind the scent of burnt flesh as she retreats to her partner, glaring at me as she cradles her hand.
I gasp, suddenly free from whatever was holding me and lurch forward, pulling Thomas into my grasp, curling one arm around him as my other hand goes for the pendent around my neck. The metal is cold, but comforting, a gift from my Great Aunt.
“Iron.” The girls hiss, like actually hiss, like angry cats. Okay, their eyes are glowing and the shadows are growing, time to leave. Without another word, I throw Thomas over my shoulder and sprint back the way we came, racing for the gate as the twin girls scream.
I run, Thomas a dead weight over my shoulder, and just as the gate comes into view, just as hope settling in my surging adrenaline-filled veins — I trip. Thomas and I tumble to the ground, my little brother goes flying from my grasp, as I roll and hit the edge of the gate. Dizzily, vison blurring I get to my feet, and immediately look for Thomas. I find him an arms length away, lying still on the ground.
No, no, no. A whine falls from my lips, I lurch forward only to fall to my knees. My eyes burn as I crawl towards my still brother, but before I can touch the plastic of his costume, he is pulled away. I look up, and see the pale angry faces of the two girls.
“No.” One last word of whispered protest as I reach out for my brother in their arms, and in the next blink, the girls are gone, their voices cackling into the night. My hand falls, landing on the scattered candy spilling from the plastic pumpkin bucket.
I scream and pound my fist against the ground, calling and then sobbing, my brother’s name. Only silence answers.
My cries eventually catch the attention of the people living across the street, and soon, I’m back at home, sitting on the couch, sobbing between the arms of my parents, clutching my brothers plastic pumpkin.
‘Beware the cemetery on Halloween Night.‘ I tell my friends, strangers, anyone who will listen. For at that time the veil between the supernatural world and ours is thin, and creatures of all sorts have a habit of slipping through. Beware, for the worst monsters of all may come and steal you or your loved ones away with terrible grins, and the only thing remaining will be the echoing cackles of the twin girls dressed in black.
Beware the Black Cat Sisters, and their terrible siren song.
They never found my brother, not even a body to bury. Not that I thought they would, monsters never leave behind a trace. They took my brother, so now I hunt them. Every year on Halloween Night, I march into that cemetery armed with silver bullets and an iron dagger, ready to kill.
I know I will never get my brother back, I know people call me crazy, send me pitying looks as I arm myself and stand at the cemetery door, a silent guard until daylight comes again. I know revenge won’t bring Thomas back, but I don’t care. All I care about is making sure they take no one else, and that their wretched blood spills at my feet.
So beware, beware, the cemetery at night. Beware the cheerful singing of the Black Cat Sisters. For I have seen them, I have played their game, and lost.
And I don’t plan on loosing again.